Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Baby Blanket Upcycle = DIY Heating Pads ... Gift Idea!

 "Blankies" in our house are a necessity!!!  Both my kids love them.  To them, the "blankie" has super powers and solves all problems... hey maybe mommy needs one too :)  The problem is my kiddos are attached to one particular "blankie" each.. and try as I might to rotate them out... IT AIN'T HAPPENIN'!!! I can't track down the exact same blanket as my son's, but I sure as heck have tried.  We now have a dozen, similar blankets that just don't quiet cut it with him. Our little girl has several as well (but I think I just found an actual "understudy" for her... yippy!!).  Long story short, we have tons of these soft, cozy, brand new blankets and I am determined to use them somehow.   Recently when I was asked to try and make some homemade heating pads I thought this would be the perfect project. In one night I knocked out half a dozen of these, which I'm calling "Little Heaty's", in a bunch of different shapes and sizes and am now so excited to stick them into Christmas gift baskets.  I also plan to keep a few on hand for boo-boos and to give as gifts throughout the year.  
This is how I did it :)
I started with a cozy fleece blanket, but obviously you could use any fleece or cotton material that you have.
Now cut 2 pieces whatever size you want.  For the large pouches I used pieces roughly 12 inches by 6 inches and the smaller version 6 inches by 3 inches.  But any size or shape you like will work perfectly!  Since these are so quick and easy you can try out a bunch or different versions :)
With the right sides of your fabric together, sew all the way around the edges except for a small 2 inch opening  to turn and fill with rice.
Next, use your scissors to round the corner so they will turn and lay flatter.
Now patiently turn your pouch right side out through that small hole you left.
I use a pencil or a chop stick to make sure all the corners are pushed out... now it's time to fill!
I just used a piece of printer paper to carefully fill the pouch with uncooked long grain rice.  You want it about 3/4 full.
For some I added a few drops of essential oil to the rice in a large zip lock freezer bag, closed it up tight, gave it a good shake and left it over night to really soak in the scent.  This is totally up to you.  I did end up doing three "Little Heaty" options... unscented, vanilla and lavender :) But you could try anything!  I will say the scent is really soothing once it's all warmed up.
Finally, I just took a little left over edge from the blanket, trimmed as close as I could to the bias tape, made a loop, stuck it into the open space for a little handle to carry the hot pouch and stitched it closed.
Since these are gifts I did add a little label with my cheesy directions :)
I think they turned out great and I hope everyone enjoys them.
Uh oh... it looks like we already have a tiny taker :)

Happy Heating, Lindsey

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